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April 2018 EFCA Newsletter

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Blog: The Best Energy Source For Our Future

When it comes to energy, society is at a crossroads. Our existing supplies are heavily based on fossil fuels, a limited and dirty solution. There are alternatives to the current system, but we need to be realistic about both the technical challenges and opposition of entrenched interests to this necessary change. What are our options?

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Visit the EFCA blog for regular news, updates, and tips for contractors.

Advocacy Update: New Bill Proposals Related to Electrification- Status

Last month I provided a list of four proposed bills making their way through the California state legislature. This month I would like to report on the status of two of the four proposals. If passed, the bills would help pave the way to using electricity as a primary fuel source in residential and commercial buildings.

This first bill on the list was known as AB 3001 by Bonta. Here is my summary from last month.

AB 3001 – Bonta, Paves the way to swap out fossil fuels with clean energy to heat California’s homes and businesses. The bill would require the state to consider the greenhouse gas impacts of burning fossil fuels as part of cost-effectiveness determinations, which currently discourage converting from fossil fuels to electricity. This is a direct response to the state’s “three-prong-test” cost metric, which favors fossil fuel over electricity and discourages “fuel switching”. (sponsored by the National Resources Defense Council)


This bill would be a significant step in the right direction towards making fuel switching an accepted practice. Removing the barrier of the three-prong-test would expedite the transition to an electric future. Unfortunately, this proposal was heavily opposed, mostly from the Southern California Gas Company, and is now effectively dead. Although this is a setback, we will continue to work on ways to address the barrier created by the “three-prong-test”.  

The second of the four bills is AB 3232 by Friedman. The following is my summary from last month.

AB 3232 – Friedman, Would require all new buildings to be Zero Net Energy by 2030. The bill also addresses existing buildings by requiring greenhouse gas reductions from existing buildings to be 50% below 1990 levels by Jan. 1st 2030.


We recently made a trip to the state capitol to provide testimony in support of this legislation. One thing that was clear in our support of AB 3232 was the number of stakeholders opposed to any such action. Even though this bill focused on greenhouse emissions many perceived it as an attempt to mandate electrification. As I have quickly learned, anything that looks like a push towards electrification is contentious. The number of public comments in opposition to the bill were surprising. The fossil fuel industry likes their existing business model and is well prepared to defend their position if they feel threatened. This must have felt like a threat to them, as there were plenty of folks lined up to provide their input on why this was a bad idea. After the smoke cleared the bill did pass, 6 yeas to 3 nays. The author of the bill will now move forward, filling in the blanks on some unspecified parts of the bill, and it will then make its way back through the process.

Perhaps the biggest takeaway of these efforts is that people don’t like change, and regardless of how rational your idea is there will be opposition. The battle to a clean energy future will be a long and hard journey. To be effective we need to work on making all forms of energy use more efficient, regardless of the fuel source. We will continue to support these bills, and other similar efforts as they arise. 



Charley Cormany
Executive Director
 

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Announcements


Contractors: Do You Want to Join EFCA’s Monthly Online Chapter Meeting?

The first Wednesday every month is EFCA’s online chapter meetings for contractors. This meeting is not focused on utility programs, rather what is going on in the home performance and energy efficiency industry. Giving you a chance to hear updates from our Executive Director, Charley Cormany, and opportunity for you to ask questions. Please join us next year Wednesday, May 2, 2018!

Join us next month Wednesday, May 2, 2018

Earth Day, April 22, 2018

Close to 48 years ago, on April 22, 1970, millions of people took to the streets to protest the negative impacts of 150 years of industrial development. In the US and around the world, smog was becoming deadly and evidence was growing that pollution led to developmental delays in children. Biodiversity was in decline as a result of the heavy use of pesticides and other pollutants.

Earth Day is now a global event each year, with almost 1 billion people in 192 countries take part in the largest civic-focused day of action in the world.

It is a day of political action and civic participation. People march, sign petitions, meet with their elected officials, plant trees, clean up their towns and roads. Corporations and governments use it to make pledges and announce sustainability measures.

Earth Day Network, the organization that leads Earth Day worldwide, announced that Earth Day 2018 will focus on mobilizing the world to End Plastic Pollution, including creating support for a global effort to eliminate single-use plastics along with global regulation for the disposal of plastics. EDN will educate millions of people about the health and other risks associated with the use and disposal of plastics, including pollution of our oceans, water, and wildlife, and about the growing body of evidence that decomposing plastics are creating serious global problems.

Find an Earth Day 2018 event in California near you, here!

Highlighted Events

 

May 2: Virtual Statewide Chapter Meeting EFCA- Calendar Invite

The first Wednesday of every month from 5:30-6:30 PM join EFCA's Executive Director, Charley Cormany, to discuss topics about the home performance and energy efficiency industry. This conversation is intended to provide home performance contractors with industry information and updates on what EFCA has been up to. In other words, this meeting is not focused on utility programs, rather what is going on in the home performance and energy efficiency industry.

May 7: Advanced Technical Training for Energy Upgrade California

This two-day course is required for all Building Performance Institute (BPI) professionals or raters/analysts who wish to submit combustion appliance safety test results to Pacific Gas and Electric Company’s (PG&E) Energy Upgrade California program. The course focuses on supplementary combustion appliance safety protocols that augment those specified by BPI. It also provides training on proper duct testing techniques, which are not covered by BPI-certified professional training, and program installation specifications. NOTE: only BPI professionals who will submit combustion appliance safety test results to PG&E’s Energy Upgrade California program are eligible to take this course.

Eligibility Requirements (must meet both categories):
Category 1- Must be a BPI professional, or a
Rater/Analyst
Category 2- Work for a company that is a current Energy Upgrade California Participating Contractor, or
Work for a company that has attended a PG&E-hosted Participation Workshop (register on events calendar) and is in the process of becoming a Participating Contractor. Build It Green will verify this information. 

BPI Continuing Education Units (CEUs):
This course is eligible for eight (8) BPI CEUs. Please have your BPI number ready so we can provide these units.

May 8: BPI Webinar (Free for Efficiency First National Members!) Creating a Quality Plan: The Template for Success

This webinar will supply you with a fully written Quality Plan (QP) that you can download and edit to represent your company’s needs. We will discuss how a QP will improve the overall quality of your company and is a statement of your company quality philosophy. The QP we will discuss is a plan that directs our focus to what we want rather than what we don't want. We will go over each written section for the ease of your use. Think of a QP as a letter from the company to management and leadership on how we will ensure customer satisfaction through delivering products they want, on time and within budget.

What you'll learn during this webinar: 
1. Why you need a QP
2. Why ISO 9000 says a QP is part of Quality Management
3. The two levels of Quality Planning

John Tooley, Advanced Energy
Earn Up To 1.5 BPI CEUs

*FREE registration for EF/EFCA members here (login required); $50 registration for non-members here. 12:00 PM -1:30 PM PST, Approved for BPI CEUs

May16-17: Home Energy Score 2-Day Boot Camp | Fresno

Two-day boot camp to complete the online DOE Sim Training & Testing and score your first home with a mentor to become a qualified Home Energy Score Assessor.

Home Energy Score is a great way to enhance your business. You can supply customers with reliable home energy information to help them save money on energy costs and live more comfortably in their homes by becoming a Home Energy Score Assessor. We want to help you take the next steps in completing the Home Energy Score training and testing requirements.

Check your qualifications here: https://betterbuildingssolutioncenter.energy.gov/home-energy-score/become-assessor

May 22: BPI Webinar (Free for Efficiency First National Members!) - The Business of Healthy Homes: Driving Leads, Driving Jobs

Healthy homes and indoor air quality are widely viewed as one of the key emerging drivers for whole-house home performance retrofits. Yet, with all the progress that has been made on diagnostics, and penetrating the health care arena, there hasn't been much discussion about the business model around healthy homes. In this webinar by Energy Circle's Founder & CEO Peter Troast, we'll get to the heart of the matter: how do HP contractors identify, market, sell and deliver profitable jobs that solve IAQ issues.

Peter Troast, Energy Circle
Earn Up To 1.5 BPI CEUs

*FREE registration for EF/EFCA members here (login required); $50 registration for non-members here. 12:00 PM -1:30 PM PST, Approved for BPI CEUs

Want More? Visit EFCA's Contractors' Event Calendar
If you’d like your event added to future newsletters or our calendar, contact Jessica McVey at jessica@efficiencyfirstca.org.

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